For my health care tidbits this week, it’s time to talk about overpaid facility managers–or at least that’s what Ian Morrison used to call hospital execs. Take this clown Clint Matthews for example. You’ve never heard of Reading, PA based hospital system Tower Health. It’s one of multiple small hospital chains across the US. Matthews was the CEO and basically ran it into the ground. Spending a ton of money on M&A trying to build it into a rival to Philly-based systems like Jefferson & Penn. The system lost nearly half a billion dollars. Did this cause Matthews much pain? Not exactly. He paid himself $1.5m after bullying the board into giving him a raise.
And of course he’s not alone. Across the country there are thousands and thousands of hospital executives with huge salaries doing similar things – although most manage to make a profit. As the local school district pointed out about Tower Health, those hospitals don’t pay any local taxes. What was not pointed out in the Inquirer article was who pays their wages. Well it’s a mix of local employers and the taxpayer (via Medicare & Medicaid). Essentially these people are government employees. The only other government employees who get paid that much are big time football coaches at state universities!
It really is time that there was a systematic review of how we organize & fund health care. Starting with the $250bn+ that is in the hedge funds of the hospital sector, and reviewing carefully how the executives get paid.